A little heat from Spain
Imported paprikas make a delicious, all-purpose sauce
Paprika is commonly used for its ruddy color rather than for its taste. Now, however, intensely flavored varieties from Spain are arriving in markets here. Their effect on dishes goes beyond cosmetic: They impart distinct flavors, from sweet to hot to smoky.
The velvety red powder, made from finely ground dried peppers, mirrors the character of the pepper used. The drying method also affects the paprika’s flavor. Peppers dried in the sun maintain a pure, natural essence; those dried over a wood fire take on complex, smoky overtones. Choose a paprika from our guide below to make classic Spanish romesco sauce. It’s a wonderful accompaniment to a wide range of foods; we love it on pork chops. You can also use Spanish paprikas as you would generic paprika, but expect more intense flavor.